Provinces in Mindanao given priority for agri-business, DA says
by Rose B Palacio
Davao City (31 October) -- The Department of Agriculture (DA) revealed that four provinces in Mindanao were given priority in the development of agri business,
DA said the provinces of North Cotabato, South Cotabato, Sarangani and Sultan Kudarat, and General Santos City (SOCCSKSARGEN) topped the list of areas developed for agribusiness, with 107,389 hectares of the total hectarage already developed for agribusiness.
President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo's program is to develop two million hectares of land for agribusiness and create two million agri-based jobs by 2010.
The development of two million hectares of agricultural land and the creation of an additional two million jobs in the agribusiness sector by 2010 top the President's 10-point agenda.
DA reported that as of August 2007, 777,869 hectares, or 39 percent of target area for agribusiness were developed leading to the generation of some 1.195 million new jobs.
DA reports said 307,888 hectares or 40% of the total area developed were planted to coconut, while 37,480 hectares, or 5% were allocated to biofuels.
Some 432,521 hectares, or 55% of the total land developed were planted to other crops, same report said.
Under the Medium Term Philippines Development Plant (MTPDP), the country's development framework, the government will develop at least two million hectares of land for agribusiness.
In turn, the two million-hectare development program is envisioned to contribute two million out of the 10 million jobs to be created by 2010.
The President pointed out that agriculture remains the backbone of our economy, so if we want to grow our economy faster and create more jobs, then we have to give farmers and our farmlands the attention they deserve. (PIA) [top]